So the last few posts have been a little down in the dumps now that I look back at them. I’ve been in a funk.

And then something amazing happened.

Fall break happened.

Two weeks off with my boys to sleep in, do whatever things we’d like, snuggle for funsies, and go to the greatest places with the greatest people!


We had cake for breakfast one day, went to the park for a few hours at a time, Aidan learned how to ride a bike with no training wheels, and we camped in a tent.


See? So much sleeping!

It started with a week of getting things done at home. Ty was out of town for most of the week, so it was the boys and me all week — and we even cleaned out the garage!

We went to Flagstaff to see Ty’s brother, Blake, and his girlfriend, Arianne.


We went to Bearizona (the boys had so much fun!). Seriously, if you live here, you’ve gotta do it once to say you did. It’s a total tourist trap, but it was right up my kids’ alley, so how could Papa and Grandma resist?! They saw “Weal bears guys! Like, for weal!”


Aidan even conquered his fear of dogs and became best friends with Yogi and Hannah — a huge feat to be celebrated!


As soon as we got back from one trip, it was time to pack for another!

Lake Havasu has a very special place in my heart. It’s been my family’s go-to vacation spot since before I was born. We meet other family there, camp, and spend all day on the lake. And eat. Always eating.

The time in Lake Havasu was particularly refreshing because for a lot of it, I was completely disconnected from home. Ty stayed home for a couple days before meeting us, so I wasn’t totally checked out. But since I had made a decision to turn off my cellular data, I recently deleted Facebook off of my phone, and there was no service pretty much anywhere, I was free to just use my phone for pictures!


I mean, seriously?


The kids even conquered some more fears and went tubing and jumped off some rocks!

I think we forget what a joy it is to be disconnected from the rest of the world and just be present. It was so wonderful to sit for hours in a cove and laugh and chat with all of my family. We caught up on each others’ lives, relived special or funny memories, and joked with each other. Ty proposed to me there, and we walked up to “our spot” our last day there to get away and recap the last (almost) 10 years together.

I was feeling so alive and refreshed on the last day when we started packing up. As I climbed into the car to head home, I figured it was time to turn back on the data and get the scoop back home.

I was really disappointed, to be honest. I received a couple emails that reminded me of the brokenness of people, and saw a conversation among some friends that was really disheartening. The conversation specifically really took me to a dark place. A place where I was really sad, insecure, and defensive. Suddenly, reality became a place I desperately wanted to avoid. I didn’t want to come home and pick up where things left off.

The drive home left me in a funk while I processed all the things going through my head. When we got home, I crawled into bed really emotionally spent.

When I woke up the next morning, before I even rolled out of bed, I knew that I just needed to clear my head. And wouldn’t you know…Jesus heard my heart’s cries. I opened my Bible app, and this was the verse that was the verse of the day:


James 316

This just hit me right in my discontent heart. Instead of feeling less than, or feeling insecure, or feeling like I wasn’t stacking up, I really needed to quiet my soul and remember what it is that God says about me and what He wants for me.

The contents of the conversation have been intentionally left out because I don’t want that to be something any of us use to not identify with this situation.

Have you ever been somewhere when suddenly discontent, insecurity, or even competitiveness swallows you up? Just out of nowhere, you are plunged into this dark, yucky, all-consuming mindset that you just can’t fight your way out of alone?

Jesus is always so ready to tell us who we are. We are important, valuable, special, unique, and His.


He doesn’t want us to live in that darkness. He would love to give us a sure, strong hand up out of the mire.

On the way to school that morning, the song “Thrive” by Casting Crowns came on the radio. You’ll find me identifying with music so strongly very frequently around here. I think something about music just connects me right to the heart of God sometimes. This song came at just the right time.

The chorus is this:

Just to know You and to make You known
We lift Your name on high
Shine like the sun, make darkness run and hide
We know we were made for so much more than ordinary lives
It’s time for us to more than just survive
We were made to thrive

Did you catch it? It’s time for us to stop just surviving.

We were made to thrive. 

When we let Jesus shine like the sun through us, the darkness runs and hides. So that we can be free and thrive.


Breathe that in today.

Doesn’t thriving in the light just sound amazing?

I’m so grateful for this fall break.

Thanks to the lessons of these last two weeks, I’m making a commitment to take my eyes off of my circumstances, and the things I’m letting others use to define themselves and me. Instead I want to strip that all away and lift high the name of Jesus.

It’s time for us to stop surviving.

Will you join me in thriving today?

Let’s thrive in the light.


1 Comment

Michelle Elings

about 5 years ago

Thank you, Hayley. From a surviving mom who is thankful to be reminded to THRIVE!


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